Building your new home is an exciting experience...
... with many milestones marking your path to moving in. And, every build experience is different. From finding temporary housing while doing a knockdown rebuild, to renting while building and going through the process of building a new home, there are different considerations, concerns and celebrations to go through. The closest you can get to knowing what it’s truly like, and how to approach problem solving throughout, is to ask those who have been through it. Practical admin, financial considerations and even keeping your family’s well-being intact are all factors customers consider when it comes to building a brand new home. So, we asked our real customers who have gone through what you are going through (or are about to go through) to give us their best advice.
Remember the details in advance
When it comes to a knockdown rebuild, there are a number of factors to consider. Yes, you have to figure out where you’ll live during the build, how you’ll balance work and school commitments and how you’ll manage rent and mortgage repayments. But there are certain details you may not immediately think of, like your utilities. For Vasan, who upgraded with a knockdown rebuild to facilitate his big family, it’s something he found surprising, but vital. “Make sure you apply for gas disconnection about a month or two before the demolish process begins!” It’s important for the health and safety of your builders, and the benefit of your pocket, if you take care of these details in the recommended time frames. Call your suppliers in advance and create a timeline of when you need to shut off utilities to ensure a smooth build.
Enjoy the experience
We understand that building a new house can come with a bit of stress - a lot of decisions to be made, and a bit of disruption to your normal life can feel a little heavy. But, it’s also a really exciting time that you should enjoy and take in. You’re creating something truly special, from scratch! The memories you create in your new home start with the initial process of building it. Adam, who opted for a house and land package with Clarendon, focused on relaxing through the process and trusting his site manager to ease any concerns. “Just chill and enjoy the experience. Don’t sweat the small stuff, the house will be done. Be nice to your site manager, they’ll be bending over backwards when you need them to figure things out.”
Don’t just decide on price
When you’re writing your priority list, it often starts with your dream additions. Then, as you get further into the process, reality starts to take over– and with good reason, you have to consider what’s in your best interest, long term, for the biggest purchase of your life. However, Matthew, who is currently building a new home to share with his wife, children and mother, is finding that you can set realistic goals for your home, without being too caught up in price to guide every decision. “My advice would be to have reasonable expectations and be patient,” he says. “Be as informed as possible and don’t buy only based on price!” What might be a better approach is to decide what is truly most important to you, and allow for more of your budget to go to those things, and see where you can save on others that mean less.
Make the most of your in-between life
It might feel a bit like life is in limbo while your dream home is being built, but it doesn’t need to be that way. Life is still happening, and you don’t want to look back wishing you hadn’t wished it away. For Cassandra, who knocked down her house in Cronulla to build the home she’d always wanted in an area she loves, this was really important. “We were lucky enough to find a rental property around the corner from where we live. It was a tiny house, and most of our old house and furniture was in the garage!” she says. “But, we really carried on our lives as normal as we could. We still had all the family over (we just squeezed everyone in!), celebrated Christmas and birthdays in our lovely little rental and made it feel as much like our home as we could.”
She also recommends selling as much of your old place as possible to help with costs. “We did a massive clean out before we demolished,” she says. “We advertised our kitchen on Gumtree and a young man from Newcastle bought it. While he was there he found out we were demolishing and came back with a truck, a ute and five friends and bought our kitchen, blinds, windows, sliding doors, flooring, bathroom vanity. It was great to see our old loved housed get a new life in a way!”
Do you love where you live, but need an upgrade? Learn more about our knockdown rebuild options
Need help managing rent and mortgage repayments? Our construction finance manager walks you through the best approach…